Trade shows are a great way to promote your business and connect with potential customers. However, it takes a lot of planning and effort to make the most of these events. 

One of the most critical decisions you will make is selecting an experiential marketing company to help you stand out from the competition. But how far in advance should you contact a trade show experiential marketing company?

The short answer is that it depends on several factors, including the size and complexity of the event, the scope of your marketing campaign, and the availability of the marketing company you want to work with. However, in general, it is a good idea to start planning your trade show marketing campaign at least six months in advance, if not more.

Reasons Why You Should Do It Earlier

Competitive Market 

One of the primary reasons for starting early is that trade shows are incredibly competitive. There are likely to be dozens, if not hundreds, of other businesses vying for the attention of the same audience. 

To stand out, you need to have a well-executed and memorable marketing campaign that grabs the attention of attendees and leaves a lasting impression. Achieving this requires careful planning, creativity, and attention to detail. Starting early gives you the time you need to plan, execute, and refine your campaign.

Trade Shows are Complex 

It is beneficial to start planning for a trade show as early as possible, since it has many intricate components that need to be managed properly. Starting early can alleviate potential issues and ensure a successful outcome.

Depending on the size of the event, you may need to arrange for shipping and logistics, booth setup and teardown, signage and graphics, promotional materials, staffing, and more. Coordinating all of these activities takes time and effort, and starting early gives you the time you need to ensure that everything runs smoothly.

Booking for Trade Shows are Harder During Peak Seasons 

Additionally, the best experiential marketing companies tend to book up quickly, especially during peak seasons. If you have your heart set on working with a particular company, it’s essential to reach out as early as possible to ensure that they have availability. Waiting until the last minute may mean that your preferred company is already booked, leaving you with fewer options to choose from.

Of course, the timeline for planning your trade show marketing campaign will depend on your specific needs and circumstances. For example, if you’re attending a smaller, local trade show, you may not need as much lead time as you would for a larger national or international event. 

Similarly, if you’re working with an experiential marketing company that you’ve worked with before and who is already familiar with your brand and marketing goals, you may be able to start planning later than if you’re working with a new partner.

It’s also worth considering the complexity of your marketing campaign. If you’re planning a simple, straightforward display with a few graphics and promotional materials, you may be able to get away with starting your planning a bit later. 

However, if you’re planning a more elaborate campaign that involves interactive experiences, custom installations, or other unique elements, you’ll need more time to plan, design, and execute your vision.

Ultimately, the key is to start planning as early as possible to give yourself the time and flexibility you need to create a successful trade show marketing campaign. Some specific timelines to keep in mind include:

Six months before the event

This is a good time to start thinking about your overall marketing goals, budget, and strategy. You may also want to begin researching potential experiential marketing companies to work with and start reaching out to schedule consultations. 

Four months before the event

By this point, you should have a good idea of your marketing goals and budget, and you should have selected an experiential marketing company to work with. You can begin working with them to develop a detailed plan for your campaign, including booth design, staffing, logistics, and promotional materials.

Two months before the event

With two months to go, you should be finalizing your campaign plan and beginning to execute on the various elements. At this point, you’ll want to begin ordering any necessary materials and equipment, as well as confirming and ironing out the logistics of shipping and setup.

One month before the event

With one month left, it’s time to start putting all of the pieces together. You should be finalizing your booth design and layout, printing graphics and promotional materials, ordering catering for your staff, confirming staffing plans, and scheduling pre-show rehearsals if necessary.

By starting early and following these timelines, you can ensure that all aspects of your trade show marketing campaign are ready for a successful launch when it’s time for the show. And most importantly, that you’re able to make an impression on potential customers that will last long after the show floor closes.

What Makes A Trade Show Experiential Marketing Company Vital For A Business

Trade shows offer businesses a unique opportunity to showcase their products or services to a large audience, but simply having a booth at a trade show is rarely enough to create a lasting impression on potential customers. 

This is where experiential marketing companies come in. By creating immersive experiences that engage all five senses, these companies can help businesses stand out in the crowded trade show environment.

Experiential marketing companies can design a booth or display that’s visually appealing and draws in visitors. They can also create interactive experiences, such as virtual reality or augmented reality displays, product demonstrations, and hands-on activities that allow visitors to experience the brand and product in a more memorable way. Such experiences stir emotions and drive brand recall, aiding businesses in cultivating relationships with potential customers.

In addition, an experiential marketing company can help businesses with pre- and post-show marketing to promote their presence at the event, and can also assist in analyzing data to measure the success of the event and improve future trade show performances.

Overall, partnering with a trade show experiential marketing company can help businesses increase their ROI, boost brand identity, and create a lasting impression on trade show visitors.

Breakthrough Productions has been helping businesses create unforgettable experiences at trade shows for a long time. We have the experience and expertise to ensure that your trade show marketing campaign is successful

Contact us today to get started!